Customs stray bullet kills two-year-old girl in Ogun
Officers of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) have reportedly shot dead a two-year-old girl in Ogun State on Thursday.
Press gathered that the incident happened at Itawaya, near the Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, Yewa South Local Government Area of the state.
Our correspondent reports that the child was killed when the NCS men were on the trail of some suspected smugglers.
The incident occurred at a time President Muhammadu Buhari was commissioning projects in other senatorial districts of the state.
Photos made available to our correspondent showed that the child was rushed to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead having lost too much blood.
There were gunshot injuries near her armpit, suggesting that the bullet penetrated the area into her body.
It was gathered some a man also sustained gunshot injuries in the incident that raised tension among residents of the area.
Sources said that a customs officer had opened fire while chasing a man suspected to be conveying foreign rice.
"Those customs officers thought he was smuggling rice, so they opened fire on him. It was one of the stray bullets that killed the child and also inflicted injuries on the mother.
"It was after they committed the murder that they realized the man they were chasing was not with rice. That’s what we face here all the time.
"Unfortunately, it happened the day Buhari was in other zones of the state to commission projects. May God rescue us," the source said.
Contacted, the NCS Federal Operating Unit (FOU) confirmed mobilising its men to Ogun State but said it could not speak on the incident.
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Speaking with our correspondent on phone, the Public Relations Officer of the FOU in Zone A, Theophilus Duniya, said the customs officers were deployed to Ogun to calm a situation.
"I’m aware officers from this unit went for reinforcement to calm a situation down. But for further enquiries and details of that incident, I will advise you to contact the NCS PRO at Ogun command," Duniya quipped.
Speaking, the NCS in Ogun 1 Area command, Ahmed Oloyede, confirmed the incident, describing it as highly devastating.
He said the command is saddened with the ugly development, adding that investigation has commenced into the incident.
"We are sad and devastated that this happened in the line of duty. It is not our joy. This incident is highly pathetic.
"We sympathise with the family of the minor and the command is making efforts to contact them. The Controller has also ordered an investigation into the incident towards putting an end to similar incidents going forward," Oloyede said.
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